FA Cup: Neves Scores Winner As Wolves Knock Out Liverpool

7th January 2019
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IMG_20190107_231123 Entertainment Gists Foreign Game Reviews General News News Sports

Ruben Neves’ superb second-half strike sent Wolves through to the FA Cup fourth round at the expense of a Liverpool side that featured three teenagers making their full debuts.

Reds boss Jurgen Klopp made nine changes to his starting XI, which included 17-year-old midfielder Curtis Jones and 18-year-old Rafael Camacho.

They were joined by Dutch defender Ki-Jana Hoever – at 16, the club’s third youngest debutant – in the sixth minute following an injury to Dejan Lovren.

Divock Origi levelled for the visitors six minutes after the break with the side’s first effort on target, when he fired a brilliant strike through the legs of Leander Dendoncker and past goalkeeper John Ruddy.

But that parity lasted four minutes as Neves launched a venomous dipping shot from 31 yards that beat Simon Mignolet at his near post.

Xherdan Shaqiri’s free-kick, magnificently pushed on to the post by John Ruddy, was the Reds’ only other effort of note.

Wolves, who knocked Liverpool out of the FA Cup for the second time in three seasons, will be away to the winners of the tie between Stoke and Shrewsbury in the fourth round.

Second-string Reds fail to sparkle

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp will have been dismayed with the way his first-team hopefuls performed for much of the match.

His strikeforce of Daniel Sturridge, out of contract in the summer, and Belgian Origi failed to gel, managing only one pass between them in the first half and only one touch in the opposition’s penalty area.

Absent was the running into pockets and slick passing made into a fine art form by their regular attacking trio of Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino, and instead the makeshift XI littered the pitch with misplaced balls.

Liverpool did improve slightly after the break. Origi’s goal should have given them that much-needed impetus, but before they could pressure the home side again they fell behind again when Neves fired in.

The Reds came agonisingly close to equalising again when Shaqiri’s fantastic free-kick was tipped on to the post by an equally brilliant save from Ruddy.

Klopp brought on big guns Salah and Firmino with 20 minutes to go, but the pair could not inspire a late fightback.

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